Verona becomes an international crossroads for Fencing: Cattolica Center hosts the Junior and Youth World Championships

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Verona becomes an international crossroads for Fencing: Cattolica Center hosts the Junior and Youth World Championships
14 March 2018 - Time: 17:40

Verona, 14th March 2018

This morning, Cattolica Assicurazioni’s board room held the official race location presentation of the upcoming Verona 2018 World Fencing Championships, which will take place inside the 25,000-square metre Cattolica Center on Via Germania 33.

Nearly 130 participating countries and over 1250 athletes from all over the world will take to the strip for nine days of competition in the building. Owned by the Cattolica Assicurazioni Group, it is situated in Verona's industrial zone, not far from the Exhibition Centre.

A video rendering preview of the interiors – the hall, qualifying strips and finals arena – was unveiled during the board room presentation. The virtual tour is part of the Road to Verona 2018 programme.

The occasion was also taken to announce the official sponsorship of Cattolica Assicurazioni, the main sponsor of Verona 2018 alongside Banco BPM and AGSM.

The press conference was also attended by the Mayor of Verona, Federico Sboarina, the Sports Councillor, Filippo Rando, the Chairperson of Cattolica Assicurazioni, Paolo Bedoni, and its Chief Executive Officer, Alberto Minali, the President of the Verona 2018 World Fencing Championships Organising Committee, Luca Campadelli, and Alfredo Rota, Olympic Team Fencing Champion (Sydney 2000).

I would like to thank Cattolica Assicurazioni for their hospitality and President Luca Campedelli who had long desired to see the World Fencing Championships in our city,” stated the Mayor. “The World Championships are an important event with a connection to the world of young people, and this delights me even more. It is right that the Junior and Youth World Fencing Championships will mark the start of our great summer season, followed by Vinitaly, the National Carabiniere Assembly, and a season of tourism, sport and hospitality in our city. The Municipality, Local Police, Law Enforcement, and the Prefecture are committed to managing everything in the best possible way, including security. The World Championships will not only be a chance to promote the importance of sport for young people, but an extraordinary opportunity to promote the territory and tourism. The city is proud to be a point of arrival and a destination for large events.

The city of Verona must be increasingly more international, more open to the world, and the World Championships are an opportunity to do so.” By his side, the Municipal Sports Councillor, Filippo Rando: “I am thankful for the efforts by President Campedelli in organising an event of this calibre. It takes Fencing and Verona’s name to the world: a fact we are proud of. The city has come together for this event and its shows, demonstrating months of commitment alongside the Organisation. We cannot wait to see the athletes at work and enjoy these Championships – which will make Verona the world fencing capital – together.

Preparations are under way in the best possible way. None of this would have been possible without the valuable help of Cattolica Assicurazioni, of Chairperson Paolo Bedoni and Chief Executive Officer Alberto Minali,” added the President of the Verona 2018 Organising Committee, Luca Campedelli. “The competition’s location by definition is fundamental and for us, Cattolica Center is the ideal place to make this Event the best in history at youth level, as we heard from Emmanuel Katsiadakis, Secretary General of the FIE, the International Fencing Federation. I also thank the other main sponsors, Banco BPM and AGSM. Thank you again to the Municipality for the moral and material support of the investees. These are not the World Championships of Chievo, but of the city of Verona. I hope that the people and athletes will enjoy themselves. We hope to do our best and give everyone an unforgettable experience.

Next to speak was the Chairperson of Cattolica Assicurazioni, Paolo Bedoni, and Chief Executive Officer, Alberto Minali. “In light of the investments made over time, we are proud to be the headquarters of the Youth World Fencing Championships. This event is of great importance not only for our Company, which will become a meeting point for over 120 competing nations, but for the entire Verona area. Sport, in this case Fencing, once again proves to be a tool for dialogue and mutual exchange, a true moment of achievement. Sport and young people, moreover, are an extraordinary duo of dialogue and integration between populations, a tool of friendship and meeting that overcomes barriers, strengthens relations, and builds bridges. Events of this kind are an opportunity for our city, and at the same time represent a duty for our Company, which bases its very work on principles of corporate social responsibility; we place the individual, family, and region at the centre of our business. We thank the Municipality, the organisers, the Italian Fencing Federation, and Banco BPM and AGSM for their valuable contributions.

Hosting an event that involves nearly 130 countries gives us reason for satisfaction, above all because these young people will face one another after having trained with sacrifice, commitment, and determination. Because of the values that drive them, they will achieve their goals, should these be to succeed or to improve their performance. We see these values reflected in our own, which we are trying to develop as part of our Business Plan and our new communications and image policy. The younger generations are and will be protagonists of a cultural change based on very precise concepts: merit, talent, and the desire to grow.

In the final speech, Alfredo Rota, former fencer for the Italian National Team and Olympic gold medal-winner at Sydney 2000, shared his thoughts: “As a spokesperson for this sport, I can only say thank you to everyone who has given this important city the chance to organise a world championship event. Winning the Olympics gave me immense joy, but you don't start out fencing by winning. Over time, you win and you lose: I too have experienced great disappointment. The word 'sport' is fantastic, it signifies life. Thanks to sport, I've learned to live and face disappointment, to overcome it, to learn and grow as a man, not only as an athlete. Seeing that very important people recognise the word 'sport' is enormously valuable to the city and to us all, giving young people the possibility to grow not only as sportspeople.

For more information



The Junior and Youth World Fencing Championships will take place from 1-9 April 2018 at the Cattolica Center, a building owned by the Cattolica Assicurazioni Group – main event sponsor alongside Banco BPM and AGSM – situated in Verona’s industrial zone, not far from the Exhibition Centre. The setting? Verona, the city of art, UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. 120 to 130 participating countries, over 1250 athletes, the World Championship Event – sponsored by the Regione Veneto andthe Province and Municipality of Verona in collaboration with the Italian Fencing Federation, the International Fencing Federation, and CONI – sees the city involved in a series of secondary events with the aim of promoting the values of fencing and world sport through the champions of the future. Official testimonials: Fencing Champions Valerio Aspromonte, gold medal-winner in the Team Foil (London 2012), and Rosella Fiamingo, silver medal-winner in Individual Fencing (Rio 2016) and two-time world champion.